One subject that I often discuss on this blog or on social media is that of nebulisers. Many consultants and doctors will not prescribe nebules for them and claim that the patient does not need one.
Those who are against home nebulisers will usually give 2 main reasons why people should not use nebulisers at home
- If a nebuliser is needed to treat the patient, the patient really needs medical attention
- A nebuliser is no better than an inhaler
I understand the first reason but surely if the patient is for example an experienced severed asthmatic who knows how to manage their condition and as such can be trusted then why not allow them to have a nebuliser at home. If using a nebuliser at home can prevent hospital admissions then that must be a good thing for both the patient and the NHS. The other issue with this is that just because somebody has a nebuliser at home it does not or should not mean that they still do not seek medical attention just because they have a nebuliser at home. I myself find that inhalers do not offer as much relief during an attack as my nebuliser does, therefore if I am suffering from an attack I can at least take my nebuliser while waiting for an ambulance to arrive rather than sat waiting and getting no relief at all. If a severe asthmatic can’t be trusted to seek medical attention just because they have a nebuliser, why is that same person trusted to make that call despite having all of their inhalers and other medication. It just seems like double standards to me.
As to regards the second reason, stating that a nebuliser is no better than an inhaler is something that I find strange, this is because if I am really struggling to breathe it is not always easy to use an inhaler and it maybe that I wont get the full medication, it is almost impossible to not get the whole medication when using a nebuliser. The other reason why I find this comment strange is that I often read reports that state most asthmatics do not use their inhalers correctly, if they aren’t using them correctly in the first place I fail to see how their inhaler technique will improve during an attack. Obviously a spacer can be used with an inhaler to ensure that the full medication is inhaled but lets be perfectly honest, how many people actually carry a spacer about with them all of the time. I know for a fact that my nebuliser is actually smaller than a spacer and therefore easier to carry about.
As an asthmatic who has nebulisers at home I find that I am much more confident leaving the house if I my nebuliser with me and I also know that having a nebuliser at home has allowed my home from hospital a lot sooner than if I did not have one. If the only nebulisers available were the mains powered ones which are usually used in hospital I could nearly understand it but now they have become so small and portable they really offer so much more freedom to those who have them. Most are now silent to operate and fit easily into a pocket or handbag.
The decision on whether to prescribe neubules and nebulisers seems to vary from health trust to health trust and from consultant to consultant. Surely by 2017 and with the amount to research carried out there should be a definitive policy on this based on fact!
I know that personally I feel so much happier and confident in the knowledge that I have my nebuliser available 24/7.
To read my review of my latest nebuliser, the Philips Respironics Innospire Go, please click on the link below.
As always, should you be advised to purchase a nebuliser and are prescribed nebules I strongly recommend purchasing your nebuliser from Evergreen Nebulisers, the link to their website is below.